East Bay Best-Sellers 

What we're reading on this side of the bay.

East Bay Best-Sellers lists this month's top-selling paperbacks and hardcovers as reported by independent bookstores throughout the East Bay, including Black Oak, Cody's, Diesel, Lafayette Books, Pegasus, and Rakestraw Books.

NONFICTION

1. Stupid White Men, by Michael Moore (ReganBooks, $24.95). Oscar-winning comic iconoclast skewers and gleefully humiliates the Washington power elite.

2. Fast-Food Nation, by Eric Schlosser (Harper Collins, $13.95). Feces in the meat and the unsavory secret of Secret Sauce are but two of the revelations sizzling herein.

3. NEW The Best Democracy Money Can Buy, by Greg Palast (Plume, $14). An unapologetic, full-frontal assault on globalization and international capitalism.

4. NEW Dreaming War, by Gore Vidal (Thunder's Mouth, $11.95). Examining the last sixty years, Vidal concludes that America is to blame for everything, from Pearl Harbor to 9/11.

5. Seabiscuit, by Laura Hillenbrand (Ballantine, $15). A horse is a horse, of course -- but no horse could ever run like this champion.

6. NEW Target Iraq, by Norman Solomon, Reese Erlich, and Howard Zinn (Context, $10.95). A war against Iraq is completely unjustified, the authors conclude, after reviewing all evidence -- or lack thereof.

7. Nickel and Dimed, by Barbara Ehrenreich (Owl, $13). A middle-class author pretended to be poor so as to describe the struggles of the underprivileged to mainly middle-class readers.

8. NEW Pigs at the Trough, by Arianna Huffington (Crown, $22). Huffington doles out a merciless pounding to greedy CEOs, amoral corporations, and corrupt politicians.

9. NEW Party of One: The Loners' Manifesto, by Anneli Rufus (Marlowe, $14.95). There's no shame in not being sociable, according to this rallying cry for society's most misunderstood and maligned personality type.

10. Fat Land, by Greg Critser (Houghton Mifflin, $24). An unflinching examination of the obesity epidemic, written by a formerly fat man.

FICTION

1. Atonement, Ian McEwan (Anchor, $14). Booker Prize-winner McEwan's latest epic examines the nature of perception.

2. Bel Canto, by Ann Patchett (Harper, $13.95). This offbeat adventure follows a band of South American terrorists who seize an embassy, a Japanese industrialist, and an opera singer.

3. Mrs. Dalloway, by Virginia Woolf (Harvest, $12). Woolf's dense, experimental, and overwhelming 1925 vignette of one woman's inner life was the partial inspiration for Michael Cunningham's The Hours.

4. The Hours, by Michael Cunningham (Picador, $13). The blockbuster film adaptation of this Virginia-Woolf-themed trilogy snagged a few Oscar nominations.

5. The Secret Life of Bees, by Sue Monk Kidd (Penguin, $14). Childhood traumas, the civil rights movement, mysterious Black Madonnas, and a trio of beekeepers populate this overambitious Deep South melodrama.

6. You Shall Know Our Velocity, by Dave Eggers (McSweeney's, $22). A self-published epic that follows two globetrotters who dole out piles of unwanted cash.

7. Pattern Recognition, by William Gibson (Putnam, $25.95). Cyberpunk Gibson's first novel set in the ultra-hip present sends its ultra-hip heroine on an ultra-cool international cyberquest.

8. NEW The Eyre Affair, by Jasper Fforde (Penguin, $14). It's 1985 in a bizarre-yet-familiar alternate universe -- and a sinister villain is murdering Britain's best-loved literary characters. (Reviewed in this issue.)

9. Boonville, by Robert Mailer Anderson (Harper, $12.95). A scathing satire of Northern California's famously eccentric hippie/redneck melting pot doesn't name names ... at least, not quite.

10. The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency, by Alexander McCall Smith (Anchor, $11.95). This first mystery in a series, set in Botswana, stars an irresistibly warm, wry, and well-written female sleuth.

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